The Geneology of Jesus – Let’s start with Tamar   7 comments

 I decided that I was going to read the book of Matthew for my personal bible study.  I am starting another R.T. Kendall book – The Complete Guide to the Parables and decided to do a bible study in Matthew in conjunction with my reading.

So, I started reading the first chapter of Matthew and it starts with the Geneology of Jesus Christ.  I thought “oh good, I can just skim through this first part and get to the meat of my study.”  But, boy was I humbly surprised!  The women listed in the geneology of Jesus caught my eye immediately; especially how they are listed.  It stopped me dead in my tracks and it looks as though this is going to be an interesting study.   I will be in Matthew 1 a tad longer than I expected and I think it will be real fun!

First, the four women are listed as follows:

    3 Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar,  5 Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse,  6 and Jesse the father of King David. David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife, So we have Tamar, Rahab, Ruth and……Uriah’s wife. 

My initial response was “Wow, poor Bathsheba doesn’t really get her name mentioned.”  Then,  I’m looking at these names again and I’m thinking – if this was a TV program, it would be more popular than Desperate Housewives!  We’ve got some pretty sultry stories going on here! This Bible Study is going to be wild – LOVE IT!

 So, let’s start with Tamar – hold on to your hats.  I love these women.

 Judah then tells Tammy to go back to her family and live as a widow until his youngest boy Shelah grows up (YIKES).  Tammy does as she is told and goes back to her family and lives as a widow.  Well, Judah does not live up to his end of the bargain.  Tammy does not hear from Judah and is now living as a widow and has no offspring.  I love this part of the story.  Here it is straight out of The Book:

 REMBRANDTSCHOOL, Judah and Tamar, Oil/Canvas

Tamar’s story can be found in Genesis 38. 

Tamar (Tammy will be my nickname for her) is a chosen bride for Judah’s eldest son Er who is wicked in God’s sight and God puts him to death. So poor Tammy is now a widow.  Judah then tells his next son Onan to perform his duty of a brother-in-law and raise up offspring.  Onan sleeps with Tammy but makes sure she doesn’t get pregnant by spilling his seed.  This was wicked in God’s sight and Onan too is killed.

   12 After a long time Judah’s wife, the daughter of Shua, died. When Judah had recovered from his grief, he went up to Timnah, to the men who were shearing his sheep, and his friend Hirah the Adullamite went with him.

    13 When Tamar was told, “Your father-in-law is on his way to Timnah to shear his sheep,” 14 she took off her widow’s clothes, covered herself with a veil to disguise herself, and then sat down at the entrance to Enaim, which is on the road to Timnah. For she saw that, though Shelah had now grown up, she had not been given to him as his wife.

    15 When Judah saw her, he thought she was a prostitute, for she had covered her face. 16 Not realizing that she was his daughter-in-law, he went over to her by the roadside and said, “Come now, let me sleep with you.”
       “And what will you give me to sleep with you?” she asked.

    17 “I’ll send you a young goat from my flock,” he said.
       “Will you give me something as a pledge until you send it?” she asked.

    18 He said, “What pledge should I give you?”

    “Your seal and its cord, and the staff in your hand,” she answered. So he gave them to her and slept with her, and she became pregnant by him. 19 After she left, she took off her veil and put on her widow’s clothes again.

    20 Meanwhile Judah sent the young goat by his friend the Adullamite in order to get his pledge back from the woman, but he did not find her. 21 He asked the men who lived there, “Where is the shrine prostitute who was beside the road at Enaim?”
       “There hasn’t been any shrine prostitute here,” they said.

    22 So he went back to Judah and said, “I didn’t find her. Besides, the men who lived there said, ‘There hasn’t been any shrine prostitute here.’ ”

    23 Then Judah said, “Let her keep what she has, or we will become a laughingstock. After all, I did send her this young goat, but you didn’t find her.”

    24 About three months later Judah was told, “Your daughter-in-law Tamar is guilty of prostitution, and as a result she is now pregnant.”
       Judah said, “Bring her out and have her burned to death!”

    25 As she was being brought out, she sent a message to her father-in-law. “I am pregnant by the man who owns these,” she said. And she added, “See if you recognize whose seal and cord and staff these are.”

    26 Judah recognized them and said, “She is more righteous than I, since I wouldn’t give her to my son Shelah.” And he did not sleep with her again.

WOW!  I will post more tomorrow.  I found some great stuff on Tamar and Judah!

Posted March 6, 2007 by Lana G! in Bible, Bible Study, Christianity, Jesus

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7 responses to “The Geneology of Jesus – Let’s start with Tamar

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  1. Hey good stuff. I’m ready for the next installment.

  2. Good observation Lana…did you notice they are all non-Jews, except for Bathsheba, who is identified by her non-Jewish husband. So what is being said here????

    Answer I am sure is in Matthew, but most blatantly discovered by Peter in Acts 10:34-35.

  3. Hi! Just stumbled across this blog by accident. Great to see you doing this! I want to encourage you in this.

    They say that Jewish genealogies generally focused on the males of the family. How strange then to find five women in this genealogy of Christ!

    When I was younger, I remember hearing men say that the inclusion of these four presumably Gentile women was significant.
    *Tamar – was brought into the blessing as a result of her sin
    *Rahab – was brought into the blessing as a result of her faith
    *Ruth (from Moab) – was brought into the blessing in spite of what the law said [Deuteronomy 23:3]
    *Bathsheba – already had a part in the blessing; she remained a part of the blessing in spite of her having sinned

    I suppose we could add to this the one Jewish woman:
    *Mary – has a place in this chapter because of divine grace shown in choosing her to be the mother of Christ

    I was always told that this pictures the believer.
    * Like Tamar, my sinfulness has made me eligible for redemption’s blessing
    * Like Rahab, faith brings me into redemption’s blessing
    * Like Ruth, I have been brought into redemption’s blessing in spite of the law (which would keep me out because I have broken it)
    * Like Bathsheba, I am eternally kept in redemption’s blessing by Christ, in spite of my failings and sin
    * Like Mary, I am a part of the blessing because God has for some reason unknown to me, chosen to show grace towards me

  4. Thanks for stoppin by! Those are great observations! I have been enjoying studying these women!

  5. Thank you for telling my story.

  6. I am woman hear me roar!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. I love this story. A preacher had a message on the God Channel about this dear lady and it fascinated me How great is God!!!!!!!

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